Woodmansey man Rob Clark gives 500 tins of dog food to Hull Animal Welfare Trust on his birthday
EVERY dog has its day.
And for unwanted pets at an East Riding rescue shelter, that day was Rob Clark's 50th birthday.
Rob did not want gifts lavished on him. Instead, he asked family and friends to help Hull Animal Welfare Trust feed hungry mouths at its Sunnydene Animal Shelter at South Cave.
Rob, of Woodmansey, threw a party and requested Tesco vouchers, which he exchanged for 500 tins of food at the Tesco store in Beverley where he works on the meat counter.
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"At my age, you've got everything you need," he said. "So, I decided to do a bit of good and ask people to help feed the animals at the shelter instead."
Rob collected £320 of vouchers.
"People were very generous," he said. "I had written on the back of the party invitations, 'No presents, please. Donations to Hull Animal Welfare Trust'.
"Everyone thought it was a fantastic idea and really got behind it."
On Wednesday, a van delivered the tins to grateful staff at the animal shelter.
"They could not thank me enough," he said.
"I don't think they could believe how many tins there were."
Yesterday, dozens of cats and dogs enjoyed a hearty breakfast, thanks to Rob.
Rob said he was inspired to help the charity by his animal-loving mother, Olga, who died three years ago.
"Growing up, we always had dogs," said Rob. "Mum loved them. Her last three dogs came from Hull Animal Welfare Trust.
"She got a lot joy from her dogs, so I decided I would do something to pay back the charity."
In return for his good deed, staff introduced Rob to the many animals being cared for at the shelter.
He said: "The staff do a great job. Only two are paid full-timers. The rest are volunteers who just love animals.
"I could easily have taken a few dogs home with me but I live in a council property and I work all day, so it wouldn't be fair to the animals, sadly."
Rob, who has worked at the store for ten years, thanked his employer for delivering the tins of food for free.
He said: "When they heard what I planned to do, they offered to deliver the tins for free, which was really good of them."
Shelter manager Amy Bryan thanked Rob for his generosity.
"It was a nice thing for Rob to do, donating all of his birthday money to us," she said. "Already, the cats and dogs are benefiting from it. They enjoyed a great breakfast, thanks to Rob."
Up to £600 a week is spent on feeding the animals, said Amy, whose charity relies solely on donations.
"We care for all kinds of animals," she said. "We have rabbits, guinea pigs, ferrets, even hedgehogs.
"It is lovely when people support us, like Rob has, and we can't thank him enough."
Rob and others from the Tesco store plan to continue helping the charity.
"My half-cousin, Bridget Clark, is organising a collection of blankets," he said. "Speaking to the shelter staff, that's what they really need.
"So, this Christmas, instead of sending cards to each other, we will be making a donation to pay for blankets to help keep the animals warm."
On Sunday, September 2, from 1pm to 4pm, Sunnydene Animal Shelter will host its annual fundraising open day.
Amy said: "We are seeking bric-a-brac items. If anyone has any unwanted items for a raffle, we would love to hear from them."
Items can be dropped off at the shelter.